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Franz Pick collection, Bonn; (+) sale, Neusser, Bonn, 15 July 1819, lot 5, as 'Das Portrait des Cornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim, von Hans Holbein'.
J.P. Weyer Collection, Cologne; his sale, Heberle, Cologne, 25 August 1862, lot 158, as 'Portrait des Gelehrten Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim'.
Friedrich Jakob Gsell (1811/2-1871) Collection, Vienna; (+) sale, Plach, Vienna, 14 [=1st day] March 1872, lot 191, as 'Bildniss des Gelehrten A.v. Nettesheim in Colü... - Schön wie Holbein'.
Salomon B. Goldschmidt, Frankfurt; sale, Schwarz, Vienna, 11 March 1907, lot 13, as 'Brustbild des Agrippa von Nettesheim', where acquired at the sale or shortly afterwards by
Rudolf Ritter von Gutmann (1880-1966), Vienna;
Confiscated by the Nazi authorities, 1938;
Transferred to the Neuen Burg Central Depot, 1939;
Selected by Dr Hans Posse for the 'Führer Museum', Linz, October 1939;
Transferred to the Munich Central Collecting Point by Allied forces, 1945 (Mü 620);
Returned to Austria, 1945.
Acquired by the Kunsthistorishes Museum, Vienna, July 1947 (inv. no 9095).
Restituted to the heirs of Rudolf Ritter von Gutmann, May 2008.
THE PROPERTY OF THE HEIRS OF RUDOLF RITTER VON GUTMANN (1880-1966)
Rudolf Ritter von Gutmann was born on 21 May 1880 in Vienna, the son of coal and steel magnate Wilhelm von Gutmann and his wife Ida, née Wodianer. One of the foremost entrepreneurs of the Austro-Hungarian industrial revolution, Wilhelm von Gutmann was also active in civic life - he founded the fore-runner of the Federation of Austrian Industrialists - and in philanthropic work. He was involved in the establishment and funding of many Jewish charities, schools and institutions, such as the famed Rudolfinerhaus Hospital in Vienna.
After Wilhelm's death in 1895, his son Max assumed responsibility for the family business, allowing his brother Rudolf to pursue his interest in the Fine Arts. Financially independent, Rudolf built up a vast collection of Old Master paintings, works of art, engravings, prints, books and manuscripts. Within a few years he had assembled a collection that was considered to be one of the finest and most important private collections in Austria.
In 1938, only hours before the Anschluss, Gutmann and his wife Marianne, née Freiin von Ferstel, fled Austria, leaving behind all their possessions. They escaped to Czechoslovakia and finally settled in British Columbia, where they were to live until Rudolf von Gutmann's death in 1966.
Gutmann's collection, consisting of more than 1000 items, his business assets and his extensive real estate, were all seized by the Nazis. The majority of the art collection was intended for Hitler's planned Linz Museum and stored under the Führervorbehalt. Many items entered museums and public collections, including the National Library, the Kunsthistorische Museum, the Joanneum, Graz, the Belvedere and the Albertina.
Gutmann was successful in regaining parts of his collection after the War and, following the Austrian Art Restitution Act (1998), 'donated' works from the National Library and the Albertina were returned to his heirs in 2006. This picture was returned to his heirs from the Vienna Kunsthistoriches Museum in 2008.
E. Firmenich-Richartz, Bartholomäus Bruyn und seine Schule, Leipzig, 1891, p. 107.
J.J. Merlo, Kölnische Kunstler in alter und neuer Zeit neu barb. und erw., hsg. von Eduard Firmenich-Richartz, Düsseldorf, 1895, no. 4.
C. Aldenhoven, Geschichte der Kölner Malerschule, Lübeck, 1902, no. 113.
Katalog der Kunsthistorischen Ausstellung, Düsseldorf, 1904, p. 31.
U. Thieme and F. Becker, Allgemeines Lexikon der bildenden Künstler, V, 1911, p. 157.
E. Firmenich-Richartz, Die Brüder Boisserée, Jena, 1916, p. 219.
H. Friedberger, in Cicerone, IX, 1917, p. 378.
Katalog der Gemäldegalerie - Vlamen, Holländer, Deutsche, Franzosen, II, ed. G. Heinz and F. Kleiner, Vienna, 1963, no. 76.
H. Westhoff-Krummacher, Barthel Bruyn der Ältere als Bildnismaler, Munich, 1965, pp. 97-100, no. 3, illustrated.
Die Gemäldegalerie des Kunsthistorischen Museums in Wien. Verzeichnis der Gemälde, Vienna, 1991, p. 606, no. 9095, illustrated.
Cologne, Josef-Haubrich Kunsthalle, Lust und Verlust. Kölner Sammler zwischen Trikolore und Preußenadler, 28 October-11 February 1996.
Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum, 1947-2008.